| | | Effective PR

Google's policy update for advertisers in the UK Financial Services Industry.

BIScom Subsection: 
Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Google Ads - which is not the same as AdSense - is getting new policies in the UK.

They apply if you are what Google defines as a financial services business.

Do you agree?

In a circular yesterday, Google says "Google will be updating the Google Ads Financial Products and Services policy in August, 2021, to introduce new verification requirements for Financial Services advertisers targeting the UK. We will publish the policy update on August 30, 2021, and enforcement will take effect seven days later. Advertisers that have not successfully completed the updated verification process by the time enforcement begins will no longer be allowed to show financial services ads of any kind in the UK, including showing ads to UK users who appear to be seeking financial services."

It goes on "Details of the updated policy

In order to show financial services ads of any kind in the UK - including showing ads to UK users who appear to be seeking financial services - advertisers will need to be verified by Google. As part of the verification process, advertisers must demonstrate that they are authorized by the UK Financial Conduct Authority or qualify for one of the exemptions described in the UK Financial Services verification page .... Please note that this requirement covers financial services regulated by and not regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Advertisers can initiate verification, or Google may require an advertiser to complete the verification process. Advertisers that fail to complete step 2 of verification within the time given will have their accounts paused. Learn more about UK Financial Services verification."

The verification page is in fact a page published by Google, not the the UK's Financial Conduct Authority.

So, all financial services businesses must comply. Right?

Well... not necessarily.

"Ads related to the following categories will not be considered financial services for the purposes of this policy, but are still required to comply with all other Google Ads policies:

• Products in scope of our Debt services policy

• Products in scope of our Complex speculative financial products policy: contracts for difference, rolling spot forex, financial spread betting. Ads for this category will be able to target UK users seeking financial services as long as they meet the requirements of our Complex speculative financial products policy and complete verification" by Google.

Gambling (Google has a separate Gambling and Games policy)

Products in scope of our Cryptocurrencies, Credit repair, and Binary options policies "

Breaches "of this policy will not lead to immediate account suspension without prior warning. A warning will be issued, at least 7 days, prior to any suspension of your account.

Please review this policy update to determine whether or not any of your ads fall in scope of the policy, and if so, complete UK Financial Services verification or remove those ads before September 6, 2021. " That's 6th September, 2021 in the UK, by the way .

As several all of those services are regulated, in one way or another, in the UK, it seems strange that Google would exclude them from this policy review.

Why did we get it? Because, as noted in a previous article about AdSense, Google have ignored our instruction to close the account for Ads and so they think it's OK to pester us.

---------------- Advertising ----------------